I feel like Doug Marrone saw Bill O’Brien personally sending the Texans into hell and then told Gardner to hold his beer. What are the Jags doing?

Yannick Ngakoue has been disgruntled for a while, so that trade wasn’t completely out of the blue. He proclaimed he didn’t want to play for Jacksonville, got in a fight with Tony Khan on twitter, and then eventually got franchise tagged anyway. He ended up on Minnesota for a 2nd and a conditional 5th round pick. He actually gave up close to 6 million dollars in the trade. He thought getting out of Jacksonville was worth 6 million dollars. Rough, but not out of nowhere. Dude was clearly not happy.

Then they released Leonard Fournette!……..??? Fournette was still on his rookie contract for another year, he was actually a productive back last season, and Minshew needs whatever help he can get. Why cut Fournette now? What good does this do? Are the Jags Tanking for Trevor? Collapsing for Clemson? Lusting for Lawrence? When the news broke, part of me wondered what I had missed out on to cause this result. But after checking the general vibes of the internet it seems I was not alone in my confusion. Everyone seems perplexed about this one. The best I can find are rumors that he wasn’t that liked, but those kind of stories always follow a surprising release. It feels like damage control by the team, even if it is true.

So what the hell are the Jags doing? Minshew is easily now heading into one of the worst situations a new QB could get stuck in. After his breakout rookie year (which was mostly just shock that a 6th round nobody at QB was actually alright) he’s in for a rough ride. I don’t know what about this team is still good. The AFCCG squad that was a half of football away from a Super Bowl is basically gone now. The only name on that defense that I recognize from the good squad is Myles Jack. That team was so good, arguably a QB away, and now look at them.

I don’t buy the meme that he’s lusting for Lawrence. If the Jags get the #1 pick he very likely will not have a job by the time the draft happens. He’s on the hot seat right now. Coughlin is gone, and the current guard feels tenuous, so there’s no real incentive for Marrone to throw in the towel when if he wants to keep his job he’s going to have to win anything he can. Maybe he’s banking on the weird mulligan Covid season? Maybe he has job security we don’t know about? Maybe he wants to get fired. He is the guy who bailed on Buffalo, after all.

There doesn’t seem to be many reasons to give the Jags any mind this season, but you never know. Maybe Gardner will be just that fun. Likely it’ll just be a toilet bowl finish in the division. I don’t even have high hopes that the Jags will weather the pandemic well, they are in one of the worst places in the country for it. The NFL has done a better job than expected keeping things controlled for now, but we’ll see what happens when actual games start and teams have to travel.